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Arts and Entertainment

This Music Video Recreates Randy Newman's Classic 'I Love L.A.'

The words "We Love Los Angeles" are in a large format mural that depicts the shape of California with a heart locating
A kid wearing face mask runs by a "We Love Los Angeles" mural at The Grove outdoor shopping center in November 2020.
(Valerie Macon
AFP via Getty Images)
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There are few more iconic visions of Los Angeles than the one portrayed in Randy Newman's 1983 music video for his single "I Love L.A."

The colors are bright and warm, as is the sunlight. Newman croons from his convertible hot rod—both he and the "big nasty red-head" sitting shotgun don sunglasses and flowy Hawaiian shirts.

The video takes us past Burrito King in Echo Park, the Melrose/Normandie exit on the 101 North, the gleaming towers of glass and steel in Century City, and even along Palisades Park in Santa Monica. From shots of Disneyland, to a guy doing what seems to be Tai Chi on the beach, you can't help but swell with love for L.A. while watching this video.

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But that was 1983. 34 years ago (oy vey). OMC did a cover of Newman's song in 1996 (21 years ago—double oy)—however, that music video stayed pretty securely to a house in the hills.

Enter Crash (aka Christopher Richard). The former member of Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeroes, as well as The Deadly Syndrome, has released his new album Big Waste. And the music video for the album's eponymous lead single took up Newman's torch.

Crash's version, directed by Dan Samiljan, hits us right off the bat with the sort of high-keyed, super-saturated colors we've come to expect in this Age of Instagram. What follows is a near shot-by-shot recreation of Newman's original—updated for full irony, of course. Rather than a shiny, red Buick, Crash drives a beat-up Benz. And that red-head sitting shotgun is a mannequin dressed to look like the woman in the '83 video.

Crash then takes us down the streets of L.A. from Burrito King in Echo Park, past the Melrose/Normandie exit on the 101 North, and even along PCH in Santa Monica.

Samiljan told LAist:

"When Crash played me 'Big Waste', I heard a super fun, LA summer jam and immediately thought of 'I Love LA.' We re-watched Randy Newman's video on YouTube (as well as Kris Jenner's 'I Love My Friends' video, which is essential) and knew we had to update it to see what LA would be like 34 years later.

Many of the shots are replicas of the original video while we threw in some new ones, trying to keep the same loving (but cheeky) vibe. We knew where to find a lot of the original landmarks, but some of which we stumbled upon by accident while filming, which I assume is how they found some shots when they filmed the original. It was like an LA scavenger hunt. I was sad to find the woman on the Trashy Lingerie sign was no longer working."

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